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Metal Aircraft Construction Methods
Metal Aircraft Construction Methods

30 min., b&w, c. 1942

Metal Aircraft Construction Methods

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HTV-0015-D $65.00

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HTV-0015-R $6.40

This fascinating look inside the airplane factories shows just how we produced over 330,000 aircraft in 4 1/2 years. Patterns, blanking, forming, and assembly are shown, of course, but so also are pressformers, drop hammers, metal spinning, and power hammers. And then watch the complicated assembly process of the P-39 Airacobra!

Please note: This 16 mm film is timeless in its information and methodology. The content offered is such a smooth and clean method of instruction that we didn't want to replace them with our own efforts, so we had the film cleaned and restored at a preservation house, and then digitally re-mastered. We hope you enjoy and benefit from the information on this film as much as we did.
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"The Metal Aircraft Construction Methods video was especially interesting since it is very likely that my dad and an uncle worked at that plant at the time of the filming. They worked in sheet metal; my dad did flatwork and my uncle was an expert in compound forming. I'm guessing the film was made in the summer of 1942, based on the type of plane built (P-39D) and the work force still showing lots of young males. By summer 1943 induction was in full gear and women would have made up a large percentage of the employees. The Bell plant was located in Wheatfield, N.Y. which is about 10 miles from Niagra Falls. It built P-39s and later in the war, the P-63. The vast majority of its production ended up in Russia. After the war, helicopters went into mass production with the Bell Model 47. Wheatfield was also the experimental facility that produced the X-1, X-1A, and X-2. Helicopter production eventually shifted to Fort Worth, TX, where my dad transferred in 1950. He went on to a career in production supervision, retiring in 1984. My uncle stayed in Buffalo, eventually ending in rocket motor assembly in Bell."
–Dr. Maj

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